Originally posted July 2, 2012, at Ben Unseth’s Red-Letter Ideas.Republished with permission of the author.
“Of course it’s true — I found it on the Internet!” How much confidence do those words inspire in you?
My son found a sales position on the web a couple weeks ago. When he went in for the interview a couple days later, the “interviewer” tried to make him buy $250 of knives so that he could do a better job selling them. He walked out. I’m cautious about what I find on the Internet.
On Friday a friend showed me a recipe on the Internet for making a red, white and blue soft drink. What could be cooler for the Fourth of July! However, call me “Doubting Benjamin.” Could it actually work? Doubting Benjamin went to the grocery store and bought the ingredients. Voila! Yup, some things on the Internet are true!
Do preachers publish falsehoods on the Internet? What if you don’t know what’s true?
Through the month of July, I’m preaching through the first three chapters of Ephesians. The series is “1st Base 2nd Base 3rd Base Home: Learning from Baseball and Saint Paul.” I say all that because of my Internet challenge for preaching Sunday on “1st Base: It’s All About Jesus.”
In homiletics class back in 1985, I heard this amazing story that compared missing Jesus to not touching first base. Thanks to the Internet, I was able to find the story. According to the Internet, in the seventh game of the 1924 World Series, the New York Giants and the Washington Senators were tied in the ninth inning. The Giants failed to score. The Senators had two outs when Goose Goslin came to bat. He knocked the ball to the outfield fence, and the outfielder chased the ball down and threw it to the infield. Goslin slid into home, missing the catcher’s tag or knocking over the catcher — depending on which account you read. The hometown crowd was ecstatic until the umpire threw his thumb in the air and shouted, “Out! He never touched first base!”
It’s a great story — but is it true? You can find several versions of the story written by pastors, including one by D. James Kennedy.
However, I cannot verify the story from anywhere on the web other than preachers. Is Goose Goslin’s lost home run fact, or is it myth? I preached with the story on Sunday — after confessing that it might not be true.
It was excruciating to dance around the lack of authentication about Goose Goslin! I can’t imagine what preaching is like for those who understand the Bible’s miracles as myth. If you can verify or disprove Goose Goslin’s lost home run, I would love you to leave a comment.
Find a link to Ben Unseth’s blog Ben Unseth’s Red-Letter Ideas at Lutheran Blogs.